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Discovering America: Flying Across the American Southwest

On a recent flight to the Hawaiian Islands I was able to take these photos of the American Southwest between El Paso, Texas and Los Angeles, California.  I have taken this flight across the Southwest before to LA, but this time I was able to get even better pictures of the terrain from the airplane.  This first picture here shows the sunrise over El Paso near the airport as we took off:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Here is a picture of the volcanic field located in southern New Mexico that I have visited before on the ground:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Here is another view of the southern New Mexico desert:

Pictures of the American Southwest

The picture below is somewhere near the Arizona and New Mexico borer which shows that a few hardy people are making a living farming in this harsh desert:

Pictures of the American Southwest

I believe that this next picture is of Mt. Lemmon which towers over the Arizona city of Tuscon at 9,157 feet (2,791 m)

Pictures of the American Southwest

Next I saw a town appear below that I believe is Tuscon:

Pictures of the American Southwest

I am not too familiar with Tuscon so if someone can identify the above picture as being from Tuscon please let me know.  As we continued flying across Arizona I saw what appeared to be another farm way out in the middle of no where:

Pictures of the American Southwest

It just seems to me that farming in the middle of the Sonoran Desert has got to be a difficult way to make a living.  Anyway the airplane next flew over the Arizona and California border, which is easy spot since the border is composed of the mighty Colorado River:

Pictures of the American Southwest

If it wasn’t for the water provided by this river life in the American Southwest would be very different.  It is quite a sight though to see such a large river flowing through such an inhospitable desert as this.  As the airplane crossed over California it passed over what appeared to be a giant sand dune:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Than it passed over a large lake out in the middle of the Mojave Desert:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Once again it is strange to see such a large water source in the middle of the desert, but there it is.  The Mojave Desert has to be one of the most desolate areas in the United States when seen from the air:

Pictures of the American Southwest

As the airplane came nearer to the Sierra Nevada Mountains the terrain became even rougher and a few mountain summits even had a little bit of snow on them:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Eventually when the plane crossed over the Sierra Nevadas the high peaks were capped with snow:

Pictures of the American Southwest

It was definitely a nice view to see these snow capped mountains from the airplane.  As the plane got nearer to LA a gigantic fog bank could be seen that covered the entire coastal plain where LA is located:

Pictures of the American Southwest

The fog looked like a giant white ocean from the air:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Besides the occasional snow capped mountain everything was covered in white:

Pictures of the American Southwest

Eventually the airplane descended into the fog bank and landed in Los Angeles where it was raining.  LAX airport as usual was an unpleasant experience to transfer flights at, but soon enough I was on my way to the Hawaiian Islands.

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